Gypsy Madden's Blog

April 24, 2019

Book Review: Playing Hooky (Prophecies of a Mad Dragon - Book 1)

Playing Hooky (Prophecies of a Mad Dragon – Book 1) by TJ & Rita Webb

5 stars
Category: New Adult
Note: Sad to say the author is in the middle of rebranding and has taken this book down along with all of the others in the series. And rebranding process looks like it’s taken well over a year.

Summary: As annual tradition, Jason showed up at Emma’s college dorm to whisk her away on a grand adventure. Usually they preferred outdoor pursuits, like mountain climbing, kayaking, and skiing. This time, Jason decided to surprise her by taking her somewhere entirely different. He has been harboring a crush on her since he was a teenager, and decided that it was time to let her in on a bit of the secret of who he really is. He takes her to a circus filled with fantasy creatures. Along with the revelation that he is in fact part fantasy creature himself, at least according to all of the creatures there, though he has no idea what. Emma, though mad at Jason for hiding this huge secret from her for all these years, is utterly fascinated by all of the fantasy creatures, and is suddenly enlisted in helping the circus find its missing siren.

Comments: I loved this short piece! It had a sweet romance (that I very much hope I get to see more of in the near future! I know nothing really happened in this novella aside from a kiss, and a lot of hopes, but I’m very much hoping for more), some mystery, quite a bit of humor, a whole lot of quirky characters (the weakest was Hunter. He felt like the standard Alpha werewolf/shifter. *yawn* At least he didn’t have a Scottish accent. So, I was rather sad to hear he stars in the next book in the series), and even some action, and even a circus (I love circuses!). Like the Harry Dresden books, and the Sookie Stackhouse books, this tosses in every type of fantasy creature imaginable, but since we’re mainly focusing on Jason and Emma and their problem at hand, all the extra elements don’t feel overwhelming. Some of the reviews complained that this ended on an abrupt to be continued note. But it doesn’t. The episode wraps up nicely with some unanswered elements to lead into future books. It does not end on a cliffhanger, like I’ve seen some books do. I did love the humorous short at the end starring Taylon, the elf. And I loved Emma’s personalities, habits, and quirks. I loved that she was a slob, and I liked that she actually decided she liked pink hair, and I loved her sense of adventure and acceptance of the unusual, and I loved all of the adorable memories of her and Jason hunting for childhood fantasy creatures in the neighborhood. And I did like that the story alternated between Emma’s viewpoint and Jason’s viewpoint (though labeling each chapter with the viewpoint character name smacks of new indie author). And, yes, I’m pretty sure I know what Jason is. A rather clichéd shifter type in books these days. And for the life of me, I don’t get why he’s not asking the other creatures around him since they all obviously know what he is. (And I think he’s an idiot if he doesn’t know what Draconian means, but then he’s not exactly the sharpest object in the shed when it comes to relationships with women either.) I should probably mentioned that in the blurb it suggests that Jason wants her as a “best friend with benefits”, which is usually a casual thing, but that’s so mis-marketing because that’s not what he’s after. And he in fact never suggests a relationship like that or otherwise to the girl in question. So, if you’re looking for a short read, with a cozy mystery, adorable tentative almost romance, and plenty of fantasy creatures, and even a cauldron-stirring witch mixing up some rather odd magic (or poison), this is totally for you.
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Published on April 24, 2019 01:26

April 21, 2019

Book Review: Lost Girl of Neverland

Lost Girl of Neverland (Neverland in Chaos - Book 1) by J.B. Trepagnier

4 stars
Category: Adult
Note: I received a free copy of this book via Booksprout and am voluntarily leaving a review.

Summary: Jade was originally kidnapped by Peter Pan and brought to Neverland to be his gang’s new mother, long before Wendy. However, Jade was a tomboy and thought it was far more fun to be a Lost Boy. So, after a major temper tantrum when Peter threatened to kill her, she escaped and took two Lost Boys with her. After surviving for ages, evading Peter, and rebranding themselves as Wildlings, the group suddenly awoke one morning to find themselves grown up. They knew that eventually everyone grows up on Neverland, but Peter hated grownups more than anything else, so their time was numbered. There was a legend about an old hag, so if she had survived Peter all these years, she might be able to help the newly grown up Wildlings.

Comments: It should be said that this book is definitely not for a young audience. It has plenty of graphic sex and it is a reverse harem. I’m personally not a fan of reverse harems, but sometimes the story can sell me on the book. And I’m a total sucker for books about Neverland. The storyline is about half and half with the sex, so there is enough storyline to hold the book together. I did like Jade. I loved how much of a strong tomboy she was, good with weapons, and fighting, and curious, and willing to talk to others to figure out if they were really friend or foe. Her two Lost Boys seemed rather interchangeable and joined at the hip. But I loved Jas (though I never took to the nickname. I kept having to remind myself of his real name and who he was). Yes, Peter Pan is more often villain in the indie books than not, so that wasn’t new territory (yes, I’m a fan of Once Upon a Time). Which isn’t surprising since he was rather dark even in the Disney cartoon. And I loved the whole sexual awakening in the beginning (though for being Lost Boys, or rather Wildlings, her group was oddly squeamish about things like nudity). Where I had the largest trouble with this story was the swear words. Actually, they were used infrequently enough not to really bother me, but that they felt too modern for the setting. And there are so many readers out there who don’t care for swear words in books (me included), so why put them in when they sound so awkward and not needed? Maybe the author just likes shooting themselves in the foot? The next problem I had was that the author actually labels the groupings as “harems” within the book itself. Like it’s trying to remind the audience every couple of sentences that this is a harem. Totally awkward and unwieldy, again. Why does the relationship need a label? It sounds trashy to outright name it that in dialogue. Not to mention that Jade seems to think all the guys should be okay with her having sex with all of them, yet she gets insanely jealous when she thinks they might like someone else or if another woman looks in their direction. Total double standard and how is that fair to the guys? And it’s like someone told the author that harems have to have the magic number of 5. Since when? I groaned when the 5 princes popped up. Seriously, harems can have as many or as few as you want. (Snow White has 7 obviously, just saying). Oh, and there were a couple of devices that got added in that felt too modern (I’m specifically looking at the plant and the wand). And the last issue I had with it was the showdown with Peter was anti-climactic. It built it up for the entire duration of the book and then was over within a page. For the record, the next book Hook sounds fantastic!
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Published on April 21, 2019 23:40

April 19, 2019

Book Review: Kingdom Collection (Kingdom series - Books 1-3)

Kingdom Collection (Kingdom series - Books 1-3) by Marie Hall

5 stars
Category: Adult

There was once a fairy godmother who was assigned to finding true love matches for her charges. The fairy rulers told her that she had only one year left to find matches for her remaining five or each would die. Sounds like an easy feat, however her charges are all villains or bad boys of legend. In this collection we follow The Mad Hatter (really more of a Johnny Depp Mad Hatter), Gerard (aka Gaston from Beauty & the Beast), and the Big Bad Wolf as they find true love. I reviewed each book separately, giving Her Mad Hatter 5 stars, Gerard’s Beauty 5 stars, and Red and her Wolf 4 stars (though it really should have been more of a 3, but I’m too nice to rank lower). Despite the fairy tale basing, these are really meant for an adult audience with plenty of sexy R-rated scenes.

Her Mad Hatter had all the imaginative touches of Wonderland and Hatter certainly did have all the madness of the original character (I would have called him Bi-polar since his personality swung from warm to cold at the drop of a hat). While he was very much based on Johnny Depp’s Hatter with the darkness surrounding him, the nihilistic vibe, quoting passages, and oozing seductiveness making him an easily desirable romantic dark hero. Even Alice had her own quirks with being a Wonderland fan girl, her Hawaii upbringing (BTW, considering I live in Hawaii, thought it came off rather authentic sounding) complete with the stereotypical Japanese lady neighbor. Admittedly, it took me a little bit to warm to the story since the beginning came off like a contrived set-up, but once Alice appeared in her cake shop, the story took off and sucked me in so much that when I wasn’t reading it, I was itching to get my hands on it and continue reading. The body of the story is really Alice and Hatter’s relationship—trying to overcome Hatter’s seeing her as just another Alice or worse yet, linking her to an Alice who had betrayed him in the past, and her trying to reconcile that he was real and wasn’t the idealistic creation of her memory and could scare her, thrill her, aggravate her, or totally laugh in her face and let her down. This a definite must-read for people looking for romance amid the madness of Wonderland.

In Gerard’s Beauty, Gerard, even with being a giant, ham-fisted, sexist pig, had such charm (and room to grow for improvement, which he definitely did do during this piece, since he couldn’t just seduce the girl this time around. He actually had to get to know her and woo her). Yes, the ending was predictable, but honestly in a romance, I would have been upset of things had turned out differently and I did think there was enough in between the pages that kept things interesting and swiftly paced so I was eager to pick up the book whenever I could. Things could have gone crass and crude so easily in this story, but I’m so happy that it didn’t since that’s a quick turn-off for me. And I loved Betty, too (I’m just as much of a genre geek and yes, I cosplay, too, so the moments at the convention rang true).

And Red and Her Wolf, I felt obligated to finish as a link in the chain so I don’t miss important information, but this one fell short. I can’t stand the alpha type. Ewan, though wildly, darkly sexy, made me hate him early on when he “marked” (bit Violet, making her his) without her consent. He forced loving him on her just because he had to have his mate and wasn’t willing to even chance getting no for an answer. Ugh. Then I noticed the Scottish accent. Eh gads, could we be more stereotypical? I can come up with at least a dozen books I’ve read with Scottish Alpha werewolves (at least his name isn’t Connal). It’s like they’re Scottish more often than not in indie paranormals. Then there’s Violet. Even though she’s drenched in blood, and has been decimating wolves for several years, she’s oddly naïve and acts like a damsel in distress the large majority of the time. And her powers of drinking other people’s souls in are disgusting and nauseating. The storyline really didn’t have much to do with the Red Riding Hood story at all. And I was bored and irritated by all the fairy politics. Even Dannika was rather scary at times. The storyline itself is the typical fantasy journey with the journey feeling overly long, and honestly I’m glad to finally put Ewan and Violet behind me so I can move on to Jinni!
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Published on April 19, 2019 00:45

April 18, 2019

Book Review: Red and Her Wolf (Kingdom series - Book 3)

Red and Her Wolf (Kingdom Series – Book 3) by Marie Hall

4 stars
Category: New Adult
Note: I read this as included in the Kingdom collection

Summary: Violet is the Heartsong. When the 10 most powerful fairies formed their council, they stripped themselves of their evil magic. The Heartsong was what was formed from the collective magic. Though one of the 10, Malvena, refused to give up her evil magic and instead decided that she needed to absorb the Heartsong herself. Rather than allow Malvena become all powerful, the Heartsong is whisked away to be raised in isolation. Malvena dispatches the Big Bad Wolf, Ewan, to kill the Heartsong. After killing her current protector, he takes a good long look at the Heartsong and realizes she is his mate. But before he can act on that, Violet, the Heartsong is whisked away again by the shunned fairy Miriam who raises her with reinforced protections. She allows the hate of Ewan to fester in Violet. Ewan, however, hungers for his mate, and finally Dannika allows him to find Violet, as they decide Violet is ready to take on Malvena.

Comments: I read this as part of the Kingdom collection, and, yes, I have the next two books already. So, I felt obligated to finish this as a link in the chain so I don’t miss important information. I loved the first two books in this series! But this one fell short. I can’t stand the alpha type. Ewan, though wildly, darkly sexy, made me hate him early on when he “marked” (bit her, making her his) without her consent. He forced loving him on her just because he had to have his mate and wasn’t willing to even chance getting no for an answer. Ugh. Then I noticed the Scottish accent. Eh gads, could we be more stereotypical? I can come up with at least a dozen books I’ve read with Scottish Alpha werewolves (at least his name isn’t Connal). It’s like they’re Scottish more often than not in indie paranormals. Then there’s Violet. Even though she’s drenched in blood, and has been decimating wolves for several years, she’s oddly naïve and acts like a damsel in distress the large majority of the time. And her powers of drinking other people’s souls in are disgusting and nauseating. The storyline really didn’t have much to do with the Red Riding Hood story at all. And I was bored and irritated by all the fairy politics. Even Dannika was rather scary at times. The storyline itself is the typical fantasy journey (at least this time it’s partially though the world of fairy tales, with familiar stories making appearances).The journey though feels overly long, and honestly I’m glad to finally put Ewan and Violet behind me so I can move on to Jinni!
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Published on April 18, 2019 23:24

Book Review: Slumber (Slumber Duology - Book 1)

Slumber (Slumber Duology – Book 1) by Christy Sloat

4 stars
Category: YA

Summary: Rory has been imprisoned at Spindle Ridge Asylum on the charge of killing her boyfriend. But she doesn’t remember anything from before she set foot through the asylum doors. Though they insist she must discover the truth for herself, some of the other doctors and inmates at the asylum tell her she is a princess under a curse and the asylum is presided over by the evil Doctor M, better known as Maleficent.

Comments: I love fairy tale retellings and this is chock full of a scattering of the characters from the original tale, with whispers of moments from the original (yes, there are fairies, and curses, and princes, and a princess), while steadfastly being a completely new tale. The asylum was a delicious backdrop of despair and hopelessness that needed to be escaped from, and Maleficent with Raven were merciless. And I loved the sweet romance in this. I’ve got a question though. Why was the book called Slumber? The heroine was never asleep at any point. Where I thought it fell short was the main heroine Rory. She is innocent and naïve to the point of being clueless and weak. I’m all for a shy heroine, but it was just too over the top how everyone seemed to walk on egg shells around her like she was made of glass. I hate books where all of the characters withhold information from the heroine. It makes it feel like no one trusts her, or sees her as being anything other than a child not worthy of knowing larger issues like who she really is. (This is the same reason why I hated Lauren Kate’s Fallen series. All of the characters were afraid to tell the heroine her character history because too much information was going to make her head explode in a shower of smoke and ash. Seriously?) And be warned, this ends on a cliffhanger to lead you into book 2. And while I liked the Asylum, the fairytale touches, and most of the characters (especially Sawyer), the storyline never really sold me on wanting to continue on to another book.
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Published on April 18, 2019 01:15

April 16, 2019

Book Review: The Real Thing

The Real Thing by Marina Simcoe

5 stars
Category: Adult

Summary: After watching more videos than she can count of the famed magician named Marcus, she finally has a chance to see him in person while she’s at her friend’s bachelorette party in Vegas. While giving an impromptu performance at the Bellagio fountain where he walked on water like a certain religious figure, Angela realizes that there is no possible way to explain off his feat of magic. Not only was she close enough to see that he didn’t use any sort of plastic sheeting to create a platform in the water, but when he stepped off the fountain he left no watery footsteps behind him. Which meant he wasn’t doing tricks at all. He was using real magic, and disguising it as tricks. But why hide it? She follows him into his limo before he leaves the scene and tells him that she knows he can do magic. He finds himself entranced by the girl in the red dress, not only by her beauty, but because she’s the first person he has ever found who knows about his magic and isn’t afraid of him.

Comments: This book hinges on the idea that Marcus loves her because she’s the only person he’s ever met who actually believes magic is real. Um… I believe magic is real. When I see magicians perform, my suspension of disbelief tells me magic is real, unless they go out of their way to show that it’s actually a trick in front of my eyes. I figured most everyone thinks that way and that it’s actually the skeptics who look at everything as being an explainable trick who are in the minority, which actually shoots the whole premise of this book. That aside, I loved this book! Marcus is ultimately sexy with his mysterious mask, and love of black leather, and long dark hair. Angela, though very Mary-Sue (which is just one of the pitfalls of a narrating character), still has enough of a history to make her a dimensional character. She has friends, family, two jobs, not much money and what money she has goes to her parents. She’s struggling to make ends meet and can’t afford to keep up with her friends (though she can afford an extensive shoe collection). I picked up this book because I love magicians and romance and fantasy and this delivers on all accounts. And the romance is deliciously slow building, and very sexy. I loved every minute of it!
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Published on April 16, 2019 22:26

April 9, 2019

Book Review: Morgan on the Run (Nine Morgans - Book 2)

Morgan on the Run (Nine Morgans – Book 2) by A.L. Tyler

4 stars
Category: Young Adult

Summary: As the Ren Faire prepares for another busy summer season, handsome Knight Prince Seth has returned, as well as Morgan LeFey herself, Penny’s boss at Morgan’s Mirrors. But this time, Morgan has brought company, one of her missing 8 sisters. Morgan has said that there will be a time of change and a time to stop running from Merlin when all of the Morgan sisters have come together. Beyond Morgan’s sisters weirdness, and the distraction of Seth, and his sister who seems to now be threatening Penny’s friend’s life, Penny also has to deal with unusual things happening to her like being able to hear and talk to the mice, and walking through the faire grounds in the dead of the night, but without her physical body.

Comments: I adored the first book in this series, so I was eagerly awaiting this book. I loved the first book for the magic, humor, and its location. And this book delivers on all three. Seth is still an epic character, with a larger than life ego, and a devilish sense of humor. Still definitely my favorite character. And this time we get to hear more about his background, fleshing him out nicely and answering quite a few questions on how he fits into this whole story and why he’s serving Merlin. Gianna is back, too, with her wild imagination, imagining mystical backgrounds for random people at the faire. Even Morgan’s sister, Megan, is a quirky, random character, who’s not afraid to turn people into bats, or brain random customers with her cane just because they looked at her funny. What felt like it could use improvement was Penny herself. She worried about everything and I do mean every little thing so much that she felt really tedious. There was no such words as relax or enjoy in her vocabulary. And I really did want her to enjoy the fantasy going on around her at least once. I mean, what’s the point of living at a Ren Faire if you’re not going to enjoy it? The ending felt anti-climactic, and the major climax moment felt muddled, a blur of magic that didn’t seem to make any sense whatsoever. The book as a whole felt really slow moving, and like very little happened in the way of events during it. Seriously, it felt a bit like the style of the True Blood series where it followed Sukie through every moment of each day, whether or not anything paranormal happened during it. Still, I’m dying for more time with Seth. So, yes, I’m looking forward to the next book.
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Published on April 09, 2019 23:34

April 8, 2019

Book Review: The Mage's Match

The Mage’s Match by Finley Fenn

4 stars
Category: Adult
Note: I received a free copy of this book via Booksprout and am voluntarily leaving a review.

Summary: Pedlar Selby Seng is offered a job helping famous mage Regin Agmund regain his lost lightning magic. His mentor tells her that for the affinity magic to work there needs to be skin to skin contact for periods of time, meaning sex. No one warned Regin that Selby was a Pedlar, leaving them to overcome all of his prejudices against her looks, and habits, and low-born status, while she is left to overcome all of his arrogance and entitled attitude.

Comments: *Graphic sex scenes and definitely not intended for a young audience*. While I was reading this book, it was a solid 5 star. I liked the characters, mostly, (Regin’s attitude did irk the entire way through, though he was hot), it held the interest, it had other things happening in it than just sex, had a strong heroine, a mystery and problems to be solved, an interesting location, plenty of magic, and fun interaction between the two leads. But after I finished it and reflected on it, it’s a four star. There are things that should have happened, that just plain didn’t happen. As in, with all of the hate and trash talk, turning to respect and attitude talk, I waited and waited, eagerly for a tender romance scene between the two leads. And aside from the love word thrown around twice, there was no tender romance scene. There are plenty of sex scenes during this, but at the halfway point, it ceases from being straight sex, to...well...stuff I frankly find gross to read about. On further reflection, the whole story starts feeling more like a male fantasy. In every sex scene, she was the one begging vocally for sex, it was never the other way around. It felt very dominant/submissive (which surprise, surprise, the male always treated the female as his submissive, ordering her around all the time), and with him looking down on her for being a low-born Pedlar (and calling her a W-word all the time -no girl likes being called that), I really wanted her to assert herself over him at least once and get him to beg for it from her. (BTW, the last scene nearly read like a rape scene. She said no repeatedly and meant it, so that bugged me more than a bit). He also never seemed to really take an interest in her (like he never really asked her about her mementos). Yes, I was warned ahead of time about the bad language, so I knew what I was getting into on that front ahead of time. But honestly, I’m not sure why it’s there other than to turn away a portion of readers. I mean, the book would have read fine without it. And you can get points across clearly without resorting to bad language. The other problem I had with this were the ages of the characters. The coven house has a whole private school vibe to it with the students staying in dorms and having faculty. Not to mention that all of the characters act young (the bad language actually is one of the factors making them all sound in the teenage years), so I was pegging Selby for 15-16 and Regin as being 17, so it shocked me when it was mentioned he was 28. Even after that, he never really sounded or acted 28. The both the mains and all of the fellow students acted like over-dramatic teenagers, especially with all of the high school bullying going on. I did love all of the discussions and hashing it out between the two leads, and trying to redefine their relationship through all of the red tape of the contract and really figure out the motives. And I did love the mystery. In all, this is an addictive read, and the trash talk between the two is amusing to listen to.
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Published on April 08, 2019 23:49

March 31, 2019

Book Review: Frostbound (The Dark Forgotten - Book 4)

Frostbound (The Dark Forgotten – Book 4) by Sharon Ashwood

4 stars
Category: Adult
Note: I obtained a free copy via Book Sprout

Summary: Young vampire Talia has been living her life hiding from the rest of the world, staying her at her look-alike cousin’s apartment. Not only is her sire after her blood after she escaped him and stole a large wad of his money, but her hunter family also treat her like one of the enemy. Her blood hunger is still a large concern too since she hasn’t had enough time to completely master it. Her only safety line has been her cousin, but then one night as snow start to fall, her cousin is beheaded. Suddenly Talia is lead suspect, or intended victim, or someone was sending a message. Either case, Talia is a wanted person. Lore, Alpha Hellhound, captures her with the intent of untangling the mystery around Talia, protecting her from whatever danger is hunting her.

Comments: I adored the first book in this series Ravenous. I adored both the heroine witch-turned ghostbuster Holly and her occasional partner cool, aloof Alessandro Caravelli. There was a lot going on in that book that I had a hard time predicting where it was going to or who she might choose, or what was going on with her friend Mac. And I loved the creepy house in it that was eating people. By the end of that book, I really didn’t like Mac. So, I skipped book 2 in this series since it starred him. And I skipped book three because it sounded like it starred the typical tough-chick Buffy the Vampire slayer wanna-be. *boring!* Which bring us to this book. I think the problem might be that I’m grading it on the level of book 1. I was hoping the blurb might be just a jumping off plot for the book, but no, what got covered in the blurb was the majority of the book. The majority of the book was spent in Lore’s apartment as the characters waffled over various things. Talia was the typical sexy blood-hungry vampire. And Lore was the typical Alpha werewolf with a pack in tow which I’ve seen a dime a dozen in indie books nowadays. Yeah, I know he was a hellhound and not a werewolf, but there really wasn’t much difference at all. And yes, I’ve seen plenty of vampire/werewolf romances. There was no surprise that the two leads got together and decided they really loved each other, and that they had to be together damned what the oddly prejudiced world outside said when said supernatural world was supposedly so liberated. *yawn* I also got rather irritated over the constant radio commentary interruptions. And I really could have done without the pack squabbles with the obsessing on choosing a mate. Seems like I can’t escape it if a book’s got a werewolf in it (or werewolf-like character rather). (At least the pack wasn’t Scottish for once! Yay!) The one bright spot was Perry! He continues to be my favorite character! I’m dying to see a book centered around him (though please don’t match him up with Errata. I’d really rather see him with someone on his own sci-fi geeky wavelength. And I’m beyond bored of plots centered on packs, yes, I know he has one). Even though I skipped the two middle books, I was able to follow along with this book easily enough (though I’m thinking I really ought to pick up the middle books just so I can catch the escape of the refugees from the Castle). So, in all, Frostbound is a decent read. No new territory is covered, but it does have reasonably likeable characters (Talia was too girly for my personal tastes. Seriously, it sounded like she had enough pairs of shoes to rival Imelda Marcos!) though no new spins on the characters, Fairview under snow was pure magic, and the history of the town did grow and hold together, along with a fascinating cast of side characters.
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Published on March 31, 2019 23:35

March 26, 2019

Book Review: Lady Jessica: Monster Hunter - Episode 1

Lady Jessica: Monster Hunter - Episode 1: Heart of the Empire by Keith Dumble

4 stars
Category: ? (I think the characters were adult. But there wasn’t anything that a younger audience should avoid reading).
Note: Free on Kindle! Short story length

Summary: Lady Jessica and her airship crew fight supernatural monsters on the orders of the British Empire. In this particular adventure, Lady Jessica and her crew are sent to Whitechapel to investigate a string of murders, they uncover a vampire nest and do what monster hunters do best.

Comments: This was a fun adventure. It’s a shorter work, but personally, I like the length. It means I’m not spending weeks slogging through it. It’s a light-weight, steampunk adventure. It’s got the vampire/monster fighting of Buffy: The Vampire Slayer, the outlaw crew of Firefly/Serenity, the vampire theater of Interview with the Vampire/Cirque du Freak: The Vampire’s Assistant, and the living ship from Farscape. All things I totally adore! Why not a full 5 stars? While I liked the adventure, it was missing background info for all of the characters (except for Flint-which was probably why I liked him marginally better than the other characters), and it was missing history of the world itself. While that seems like a minor complaint, it felt like I was missing important information like why was a group of outlaws working for the Empire? I wondered if Flint might be the same Captain Flint as in Treasure Island, so I was wondering if the other characters were also supposed to be famous literary characters like in League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, but I didn’t find anything on the others. Lady Jessica really seemed like she was missing something. As in, she didn’t dress like a lady, she certainly didn’t act like a lady, she didn’t do anything that a proper lady would be doing, and she didn’t seem to have any money or any land. The other thing that was lacking was emotion. There was some emotion in a climactic scene toward the end, but without that emotion, I end up not sympathizing with any of the characters. There were also some really cliché/convenient things that popped up integral to the plot (the tooth communicators and there was something at the end that also felt too convenient, but I won’t spoil). I should also mention that the murders, aside from being a string of murders set in Whitechapel during the Victorian period, have nothing else to do with Jack the Ripper. So, fanatics of Jack the Ripper will be sorely disappointed. (And yes, I’m in that number). So, if you’re looking for a light steampunk adventure that doesn’t bother with depth or emotional heart-strings or that pesky thing called romance, this is perfect for you.
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Published on March 26, 2019 23:30